The truth is, I don't like most holidays. They are overhyped, overblown, expensive, inconvenient, and irritating.
Frankly, I think most of them are perfectly meaningless. Any meaning they once had has been lost as time has obliterated their origins and a frenzy of commercial hedonism has obscured their intent.
Now, they are just an excuse for retailers to dupe us into buying as much of their cheap garish crap as we can fit into our gas guzzling behemoths and drape all over our faux stuccoed McMansions.
Even the most sanctified of all holidays does not escape my scorn. Get ready for this...I don't even really like Christmas all that much.
I know some people love Halloween with all their black and orange striped heart and soul. And that's fine. But it's not a sentiment I share. I never have. I'm not sure I even liked it all that much when I was a kid. I mean, I grew up in Wisconsin for pity's sake. By October 31st it was COLD. And of course, I was made to wear a winter coat over my costume.
What's the point, I ask you?
I know, candy, and loads of it. But I'm not really a big candy eater (my husband is snickering, but honestly, unless I'm hormonally influenced, I can take or leave chocolate)).
As an adult, I find it stressful and irritating. The costumes for one. Oh, the pressure!! The running around! The competimommies who make cute and innovative and origianl costumes from scratch! Gag. My kids are bigger now, and quite frankly, I am ridiculously happy that they are content with a hockey mask and some fake blood.
And the candy. Dear God...how does one buy the right amount of candy?? In fourteen years of parenting, I have never managed to find Halloween candy zen. I am terrified of getting too little, because we've all heard the stories right? Cars keyed, homes egged, trees toilet papered by disgruntled trick or treaters.
Down with trick or treat tyranny!!
As insurance against such, I invariably overbuy. And then I am stuck with that shit for months.
I've tried pawning it off on husband's co-workers, but many of then have kids and are just as deserate as I am to get rid of it. Even the teachers don't want it. I know, because every year I try to unload the unwanted mega bag filler on them. They're not fooled by my opportunistic generosity.
And the trick or treating?
I hate being held captive in my home. I hate having to pop up every three seconds like some kind of deranged jack rabbit. One cannot read, or watch television, or clean, or do anything, really because one is at the mercy of the doorbell.
It IRRITATES me.
Now, the little ones are cute. I like seeing the pint sized princesses and the diminutive Darth Vaders. The puppy dogs and firemen and train conductors. The ballerinas and butterflies and ladybugs. They're adorable and sweet and innocent and most of are not at all enthused about going door to door asking scary people for candy. In fact, some of them dislike it intensely. And yet their parents parade them around the neighborhood with maniacal determination in the guise of paternal altruism.
I find it very weird.
My son's first Halloween we went to four houses before he melted down and you know what we did then?
WE WENT THE FUCK HOME.
One of the gals with whom I am friendly and who has boys roughly the same ages as mine called me yesterday to let me know that they were all going to a local church for pre-trick or treating festivities. The kids get hot dogs and chips and can cavort in costume in a non-pagan environment.
Can you hear my eyes rolling??
Then they will be trick or treating at no less than three local neighborhoods. This is AFTER they have gorged themselves on orange sprayed cupcakes and juice boxes at school.
As I said, my boys are older now. They still enjoy trick or treating, but I no longer feel the intense pressure to make it as picture perfect as I once did. They want to use an old pillowcase to put their candy in. They want to wear costumes that look like they just threw them together from whatever was lying around the house. Because, you know, they're just way too cool to put any real thought into a costume. Dudes, when you are 13, that's just lame.
Diminutive One still derives a certain amount of excitement from Halloween, and I will do my best to indulge that. But secretly, I'm happy that his big brother's influence tempers his enthusiasm a little.
That makes me feel kind of bad, really. But it is what it is. When it comes to holidays, I will never be Martha Stuart.
I guess I'll have to find a way to make up for that. Add that to the list. SIGH.